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EM - I have been working all day. The magnitude of tidal range is not just a result of the gravitational pull of the Sun and Moon. It varies so much mainly due to the oceans effectively sloshing around as a consequnce of the Earth's rotation with respect to the Sun and Moon, and the Moon's orbit. Hence the range varies greatly depending on location - it is massive in Newfoundland and considerable in Cornwall, but nothing to write home about elsewhere. The tiny variations in the gravitational force is compounded by other factors including the period of the Earth's rotation, geographic position, bathography and island and coastal obstructions. (Think of a few dozen soldier's marching in unison across a bridge which is designed to take much heavier loads - if their steps coicide with the bridge's resonant frequency each up down movement of the bridge will be amplified, until possibly causing a catastrophic failure of the bridge's fails). [My father once told me that this happened to a bridge in WW2 - the British soldiers always took care to walk across it, but when the Japanese captured the bridge they made the mistake of marching, and the bridge collapsed. I don't know iof the story is true but my father had an uncle who despite the odds survived the Burma railway, so it could be].

If the tidal range is purely due to this minute but direct gravitational force exerted by Moon and Sun as you suggest, then how come there is next to no tide in the Mediteranean, or the Great Lakes, or Loch Rannoch for that matter?

Why don't you just admit that your Greenland Ice sheet theory (that it causes a 30m rise in the local sea level due to it's gravitiational mass) is bollocks? It would save me time and you further embarrasment.

Feb 23, 2018 at 4:10 PM | Registered Commenterlapogus


SpaceX have reasonable "previous" iterating never before tried landing dynamics - they will get it to work.

Tesla Model 3 though ... is looking wobbly.

Feb 23, 2018 at 4:03 PM | Registered Commentertomo

Ah, physicists!

Feb 23, 2018 at 4:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

"Ahead of launch, Elon Musk put this image of the boat and net tasked with catching the Falcon 9 fairing on Instagram. Musk said the fairing has onboard thrusters and a guidance system to bring it through the atmosphere intact.
* He later confirmed boat had failed to catch the part *"

Feb 23, 2018 at 3:23 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

As a debating chamber this BH chatroom is tiny, but the traffic between Supertroll and Entropic Man is interesting. Superficially about a narrow subject - core sampling methodology - the two polite combatants are debating evidence and bias; science as opposed to scientists; the role of money in establishing the truth.

I must confess to a bias against EM who I see as a reincarnation of some medieval priest who never doubted the bible, a man liable to yell, "so, wicked heretic, you dare DOUBT the word of the clergy?!". Despite my bias (we all of us have them) I read EM's posting this morning (09:52) and wondered if I had dismissed him too hastily. My assessment of him was never about the individual; more about the approach he advocated: that the layman should defer to the expert. A millennium ago Chaucer warned us about this in the Miller's Tale. Essentially, just because the lad is an Oxford graduate, his prediction of a catastrophic flood tonight may be wrong (and even the layman can assess this) or even a front for some hidden agenda such as having it away with the Miller's lovely wife. EM's limits are on view with his gormless twaddle about "lateral forces". He clearly comes from the non-Newtonian fringe of soft science. To quote Rutherford: "There's physics and all the rest is just stamp collecting."

EM wrote, intelligently, about the similarities between science and history. Both, he correctly tells us, are subject to bias and a man or woman of integrity must be prepared to counter their own bias because both professions are in the business of discovering truths.

But then EM ruins it. To suggest that in either of these noble professions the self-confessed bias might actually influence his/her final pronouncement in his words is.... is..... a "gross insult".

Mate, science as a discipline is pure and noble. "Scientists" on the other hand are fallible human beings. Even the saintly Mendel wasn't above it. Scientists have "interests", they have salaries and mortgages like most of us, and part of the modern skillset is the ability to attract "funding". You may feel entitled to more money to refine your core-sampling equipment; you may lament the wicked energy companies having better hardware. But, unlike you in your ivory tower, private sector businesses run the risk of insolvency; their personnel at risk of unemployment.

Go, Supertroll!

Feb 23, 2018 at 3:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterBrent Hargreaves

I realise that you are a retired petroleum geologist accustomed to having the resources and budget of the oil companies behind you, but I think you overestimate the resources of a university botany department. Did you have all that gear at UEA?

Feb 23, 2018 at 12:45 PM | Unregistered Commenter Entropic man

Many of us realise that retired science teachers with little practical experience, should not be talking down to people with genuine real world experience, (outside of dodgy theoretical computer models), in a condescending manner, from the bottom of a hole that they are still digging for themselves.

Feb 23, 2018 at 3:00 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

These must be due to super hurricanes, the like of which have not been seen in recent centuries.

Feb 23, 2018 at 12:24 PM | Unregistered Commenter Supertroll

Or Tsunami events?

Feb 23, 2018 at 2:49 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Supertroll, I think I mentioned digging holes to you, a few years ago, was it in relation to silted-up Cinque Ports?

Different technologies, techniques, costs, DIYability, rucksack v truck portability all apply. It comes down to "Fitness for Purpose".

I have done some archaeology and forensic work, which may have required lab analysis and meticulous recorded methodology, I have also done some geotechnical work where the results were blooming obvious as stuff came out of the ground, or did not emerge at all. Photos taken though, and limited material sent for analysis as Legal evidence, should it have been required in future years.

Plumbers have been using Pipe Freezing Spray for emergency repairs, and Ice Core Samples have also been taken for years. It would not take too much ingenuity to combine the two, to make it backpackable for field investigations. Can you get a Freezing Spray to evaporate underground?

Presumably it would not be rocket science to drill a ring of holes, squirt down liquid nitrogen, freeze the subsoil and then core drill the middle?

Meanwhile Climate Science does rely on NASA Rocket Science to measure sea level, and then bleats about the orbital decay of satellites, when results don't match expectations.

tomo, the suction effect, quicksand etc became very real after the Morecambe Bay Cockle Picker tragedy. The use of small hovercraft, equipped with air pumps connected to lances that could be pushed into the mud was developed, not to blast people out of the mud, but relieve the suction beneath them, so they could be pulled out

Feb 23, 2018 at 2:44 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


common practice to have a one way valve arrangement at the top of the corer barrel - but even still with a full barrel in the "right" goop - recovery will simply invert the catcher and extract the captured sausage....

Pressure washers are a godsend.

Feb 23, 2018 at 2:06 PM | Registered Commentertomo

Times : EDF's cheap new reactors 'cast doubt over Hinkley Point costs
EDF has claimed that a new nuclear reactor it is developing will be a better and cheaper version of the two it is building in Britain.

Mind you the dates are all over place
"The state-owned French energy group said that its “optimised” version of the European Pressurised Reactor being installed at Hinkley Point in Somerset would be unveiled in 2020 and was destined intially for the French market.
A spokeswoman said that the optimised reactor would be between 25 per cent and 30 per cent cheaper than the existing version. It is scheduled to be available for use from 2030.
The newspaper Le Monde reported that the new reactor could cost as little as €6 billion, or £5.3 billion. The cost of the two reactors due to come on stream at Hinkley…"

Feb 23, 2018 at 1:55 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

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